MR. BEN. ROBERTS
MR. SCHRAMM THE ■ NEW SPEAKER
(Special) WELLINGTON., this day. At the Government caucus in Parliament Buildings to-day, the Minister of Finance, Mr. Nash, presided, °Yiu 8 l r? the temporary indisposition of the Prime Minister, Mr. Fraser It was announced at the luncheon adjournment that Mr. Fraser had been enthusiastically re - elected Leader of the party, with Mr. Nash as deputy-leader. It was reported that unanimous confidence was expressed in the Prime Minister, and tributes were paid to his magnificent work for the Dominion and for the Labour movement.
Reference was made to members who had lost their seats in the general election, and Mr. Nash paid
special tribute to their work over a long period, adding that he knew they would continue this work outside Parliament, and later they would come back again to resume their Parliamentary duties. With the exception of the Prime Minister, there was a full attendance of members, and, Mr. Nash welcomed new members from Napier, Raglan, Eastern Maori, Grey Lynn, Northern Maori - and Dunedin West. It was decided to request the Prime Minister to recommend to the Gov-ernor-General the appointment of Mr. Ben Roberts, of Wairarapa, to the vacancy in the Ministry caused by the defeat of the Af inister of Agriculture, Mr. Barclay, and it was also decided that on the assembly of Parliament Mr. F.-W. Schramm, Auckland East, would be nominated for the office of Speaker.
Mr. Robert McKeen, Wellington South, was unanimously recommended for reappointment to the position of Chairman of Committees. The Government whips, Mr. A. S. Richards, Roskill, and Mr. D. W.
Coleman, Gisborne, were unanimously reappointed, and Captain T. H. McCombs, Lyttelton, was reelected Secretary of the Parliamentary Labour party. "The meeting was one of the most enthusiastic in the history of the party," said Mr. Nash, "and with the new members the fighting strength in Parliament for progressive legislation is as high as at any period in the life of the Labour movement." Caucus continued its meeting this afternoon.. .
Mr. Ben Roberts, who will succeed Mr. J. G. Barclay in the Ministry and is M.p. for Wairarapa, came to New Zealand from Liverpool in 1907 and settled in the district he represents in Parliament. .Jn 1916 he took up farming on the Canter Estate, and though the land was not of the best, he made a success of the venture, becoming a breeder and exhibitor of stock. He has also interested himself- in the culture ' of tomatoes. Mr. Roberts, who' is a former chairman of the Parkvale Co-operative Dairy Company, was elected president of the provincial district organisation, of the Dairy Farmers' 'Union upon its formation. He has been a member of the Labour party since 1913. " Mr. F. W. Schramm, Speaker-elect, a ■well-known .Auckland lawyer, has represented the constituency of Auckland East since 1931. Born in Hokitika, he was educated at the Hokitika High School and Canterbury College. He worked for some vears in the Justice Department and was deputy-registrar and deputy-sheriff of the Supreme Court in Auckland before he entered into • private practice. He volunteered for service in the Great War,-and, although rejected for overseas duty, spent eighteen rhonths in camp in the Dominion. He has long been associated with Ihe Labour movement, and at the general election in 1928 unsuccessfully contested the Hamilton seat against the then Minister of Health, Mr. J. A. Young. In his younger davs Mr. Schramm was prominent in athletics,- Rugby, cricket and hockey. He represented Canterbury College for two years in the New Zealand University championships.
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NEW MINISTER, Auckland Star, Volume LXXIV, Issue 255, 27 October 1943
NEW MINISTER Auckland Star, Volume LXXIV, Issue 255, 27 October 1943
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